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Grand Adventure Guide
on April 23, 2007
Alright, let's get the first thing out of the way right here and now. This guide doesn't have a proper Pokedex. It's got a list of all the Pokemon you can catch in the game, but not a full blown Pokedex that'll show you all those really cool stats and moves list. By now it's come to be expected that guide companies will release a Pokedex later on, as Nintendo Power and Prima have plans to do so. I just wanted to get that out of the way. If you're buying the guide simply for a detailed Pokedex, you won't get it here, and you won't get it with the Prima Guide either.
Outside of that, however, the Nintendo Power guide to Pokemon Diamond and Pearl is one of the best ways for getting you adapted to the game. It's very well put together, and very detailed (sometimes too much for its own good). The guide begins like many of them, with all the basics there are. And this guide is full of them. From telling you about all the starter Pokemon to getting you adjusted to the new Wi-fi network, it's all here. Most gamers will know about most of the old stuff, like how to battle and the type chart that Nintendo Power has used forever, but if this is your first time through a new Pokemon Adventure and you want to know how to go about it right, this guide does provide some good tips. Pokemon experts who've been there for a while: these tips are natural to you by now. However, it does help to look into the guide and dwell into the Wi-Fi connection stuff that's located here. This stuff really is new, and at first it can be complicated.
The walkthrough, however, is almost perfect. Each section begins with a checklist of things to do. There are two checklists for each area. What to do when you're there for the first time and what to do on your return visit when you come back later on in the game. Each time you see an objective in the checklist, check the main text for the section which matches it. The reason this method works is because the guide also points out on the map where you need to be doing these things. You don't have to do every objective of course, but at least the guide waste no time in telling you about them. It makes the walkthrough simple to use. The guide also points out the location of all the items.
There are a couple of small problems I did have with the walkthrough, however. As usual, Nintendo Power does not give the best strategies and suggestions for fighting bosses or tougher adversaries. You know the roster of the Gym Leaders, Team Galatic Commanders and your Rival, but the strategies and suggestions they give you really aren't much to go jumping home about. This is pretty common in Nintendo Power guides as a whole, but in Pokemon it's not too big a problem because there are so many different set ups and strategies that there are times when no strategy and just a roster would've been just as helpful. When entering routes the guide hardly tells you what to expect from trainers. It doesn't even bother to say, "They mostly use water Pokemon." There are some moments when they do, but for the most part you're going through blind.
It's nice that once again they have individual Pokemon profiles for new Pokemon, at least. You can learn about a Pokemon before deciding to capture it. There are a few moments where the guide actually feels a bit overwhelming in its information. Luckily it's all organized and easy to flip through and find. Although there's a bit of page flipping when you can't remember what to do when it comes to revisiting a town.
After the walkthrough, which will get you through the adventure with ease, the guide will go into the Pokedex. Again, this is not a proper Pokedex. It merely shows you which Pokemon you can catch in the game and then shows you where you can catch them. That's it. No moves list or anything. In some ways it's fairly useless, but in others you can make due with it simply just to see which Pokemon you can catch.
Afterwards we get into all the appendices, and they feel never ending. Everything is there at least. All the items, moves, TMs, HMs, prizes from contests, abilities, battle moves. You name it it's here.
Essentially this is almost a perfect guide. It's not quite fantastic, but if you need something to get you through the main adventure, this guide will do a pretty good job at helping you get there. As far as the Pokedex goes, however, you'll just have to wait until Nintendo Power puts there's on the market.